7 Things You Need to Know about Transcendental Meditation and Why This May Be Exactly What You Need

7 Things You Need to Know about Transcendental Meditation

What’s a young, cool dude like you doing at a web page that discusses TM? Isn’t this a movement that belongs back in the ‘60s?

The Beatles didn’t invent it, and the movement started in the 1950s. An Indian guru known as Maharishi Mahesh Yogi presented the technique.

And no; it’s not outdated.

No; the fact that you’re young and cool doesn’t prevent you from being interested in it.

No; meditation is not for Instagram girls who like taking photos of themselves meditating by the sea. They don’t even meditate; they are focused on looking sexy and snapping the perfect picture. Well if they are focused enough, could we call that meditation?

Never mind.

The point is that transcendental meditation is a pretty good interest for you to have. It makes you a better person. Being a better person never goes out of style.

Oh look; we already mentioned a few facts about TM that you didn’t know. Want some more?

Here are 7 impressive things you need to know about transcendental meditation:

1. Oprah Likes It

Whatever Oprah promotes goes mainstream. Hey; the woman has a huge audience that respects her, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Oprah Winfrey promotes a movement known as Transcendental Meditation for Women. Anyone interested in writing a comment about women discriminating men? Be my guest; the comment section is open.

But no; this technique is not discriminatory.

Male celebrities practice it, too. Who? Dr. Oz himself. You may like or dislike Dr. Oz, but one thing is for sure: the things he says about transcendental meditation are absolutely valid. The practice had a huge (positive) influence in his life.

Do you want a cooler celebrity as an example? How about David Lynch? He even wrote a book called Catching the Big Fish: Meditation, Consciousness, and Creativity. It’s a good read to check out if you want the first-hand experience shared in an easy-to-read way. David Lynch is known as one of the most creative directors the world of cinema has ever seen. Do you know what helped him stay insanely creative over the years? You guessed it: TM.

2. Some People Oppose Meditation Without Knowing What They Are Talking About

When you start practicing TM, you’ll be so excited about the changes you experience that you’ll want to inspire everyone you know to try it. It’s that beginner enthusiasm that most of us are going through. You’ll feel like you could change the world if you could convince everyone to meditate. You’re right; the world would be a better place if everyone meditated. But the problem is that you can’t convince everyone to try.

Don’t worry; you’ll learn your lesson. You’ll realize that it’s smarter just to practice. You’ll talk about meditation only when it’s relevant in a conversation.

That’s because people have silly prejudices towards meditation. These are only a few of the comments you’ll encounter:

  • “Meditation is not for me. I couldn’t possibly sit still without doing anything.”

This is a common comment you’ll hear from people who never bothered trying. These are the hyperactive personalities you’ll see shaking their legs all the time even when they are sitting down, trying to stay still.

Here’s a paradox: those are the ones who need meditation the most.

With commitment, even they can achieve stillness.

3. “It’s silly.”

This is the category of people you can’t really convince, so this is the only answer you could give to such a comment:

  • Uhm, no it’s not!
  • “OMG, you meditate? Did you know that you’re opening your mind for demons to enter? That’s dangerous, and it’s not spirituality. It’s demonology if you will.”

This is the most difficult category of opponents to deal with. They are so stuck in their prejudices that you can’t decide if they are serious or they are trolling you.

But to clarify this – no; demons won’t enter when you meditate and calm your mind down (I had a good laugh while writing that sentence because it’s just so obvious). This is a mental technique that puts you in direct connection with yourself. It helps you find peace behind the chaos of your mind.

When you isolate it from Hinduism, it’s completely unreligious. It’s nothing but a mental technique that even psychiatrists often recommend to their patients. No; they don’t recommend it because they want demons to enter the patient’s mind so they would come back for another session. LOL! They suggest it because it’s effective and they are professional enough to accept the things that are effective.

4. Transcendental Meditation Has Benefits Proven by Scientific Research

If you search Google Scholar for the keywords “transcendental meditation,” you’ll find several studies to explore. You know how academics are with their big words and all, but some of these studies are clear enough to read.

Here’s what one study found:

“As predicted, experienced meditators were significantly less anxious and more internally controlled than beginning meditators.”

This tells us an important thing: with regular practice, TM can help you put anxiety under control. It helps you control your thoughts and emotions. It just makes you more stable. Is there a man among us who doesn’t want that?

Also, this study found that experienced meditators were significantly more self-actualized.

5. It’s Not Recommended to Learn It Online

Transcendental meditation is based on a mantra. The mantra is a one- or two-syllable word that you silently repeat while meditating. You don’t know its meaning, and you don’t focus on discovering it. Its purpose is to consume your complete attention, leaving you in a state of inner silence.

This video, featuring Maharishi himself, clarifies that:

Video. Source

Where do you find that mantra? Well that’s a question that many people have to their minds. Google will surely lead you to some mantras. But the TM method is based on individual mantras, which are being assigned by a teacher during instructions.

Plus, learning meditation under proper guidance is much more effective than trying to meditate through a YouTube video. You get to connect with the teacher, and they are there to direct you if you get anxious or you can’t stay still.

So trying to find a teacher and attending a TM course is the best thing to do if you’re trying to learn the technique.

6. You Can Meditate Anywhere

At first, you’ll get used to meditating in a quiet space, which allows you to focus on your inner world. But with time and practice, you’ll realize that meditation is something you can carry with you.

If you’re stuck in public transport, you can close your eyes and meditate. If you’re stuck in an airport jam, you can sit and meditate. When your mind becomes strong enough, it can isolate itself from all distractions coming from the outside.

But please don’t do it for Instagram photos. Just meditate for yourself. Showing off doesn’t make you cool.

7. You Don’t Have to Change Your Beliefs

You’re a believer, but not of Hinduism? It’s okay; meditation is not a religious practice. It’s a mental technique, and you can practice it.

Do you eat meat? It’s okay. It’s your choice, and the teacher won’t ask you to become a vegan to get instructions.

Students, workers, bosses, older adults, men, and women – anyone can meditate as long as they choose to do so.

There’s Some Controversy Around It

Money is the biggest controversy. TM can get expensive. Don’t worry about Oprah; she can afford it. But what about us ordinary people? Is meditation reserved for the rich?

The price of an introductory course can reach over $1,000. When you go through the program, you’ll be able to meditate on your own. It’s no wonder why they are not teaching it on YouTube, huh? They want the money.

So are you willing to pay so much to learn transcendental meditation? Some people are, and they don’t regret the decision. This is an incredibly useful technique that changes their lives.

But you should know that it’s not the only type of meditation that exists. If you can’t afford a certified course and you still want to meditate, you can simply try other techniques. There are several types of meditations you can try, and it’s pretty possible to find a decent local yoga teacher who won’t charge a crazy price for a course.

Speaking of controversy, the TM community gets a bit weird. Most people stay normal – they meditate. But some are outside the normal pattern. Tony Nader, the current leader of the TM movement, was named Maharaja Adhiraj Rajaraam. It means he’s a great king and he wears a golden crown around.

And he’s not the only one in the organization wearing a crown. Go figure.

Practice Like a Normal Person

Did you notice how we started this article with bragging about meditation but ended on a slightly different note?

Practicing TM is great. Yes; the technique has the power to change your life. But it can also drag you into a cult if you give away too much of yourself. When you choose to practice, it’s important to preserve your sanity. Meditation can make you a better person. It can make you a more relaxed person. And no; wearing a crown is not cool. Standing your ground is!

 

About the author Jade Parker

Jade Parker is a writer for AssignmentMasters. She is passionate about writing, blogging, and meditation. Meditation changed his approach to work, relationships, food, and life in general.